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Abbott Launches New Test that Detects Coronavirus in Just Five Minutes

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 28 Mar 2020
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Image: ID NOW™ (Photo courtesy of Abbott)
Image: ID NOW™ (Photo courtesy of Abbott)
Abbott (Lake Forest, IL, USA) has been issued Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the fastest available molecular point-of-care test for the detection of novel coronavirus (COVID-19), delivering positive results in as little as five minutes and negative results in 13 minutes. The test will run on the company's ID NOW platform, providing rapid results in a wide range of healthcare settings such as physicians' offices, urgent care clinics and hospital emergency departments.

ID NOW is a rapid, instrument-based, isothermal system for the qualitative detection of infectious diseases. Its unique isothermal nucleic acid amplification technology provides molecular results in just minutes, allowing clinicians to make evidence-based clinical decisions during a patient visit. The ID NOW platform is small, lightweight (6.6 pounds) and portable (the size of a small toaster), and is already the most widely available molecular point-of-care testing platform in the US today.

Abbott will be making ID NOW COVID-19 tests available next week to healthcare providers in urgent care settings in the US, where the majority of ID NOW instruments are in use today. The company is working with the Administration to deploy tests to areas where they can have the greatest impact. The arrival of the Abbott ID NOW COVID-19 test comes a week after the company launched its Abbott m2000 RealTime SARS-CoV-2 EUA test, which runs on the m2000 RealTime System located in hospital and reference labs around the world. Between the two platforms, Abbott expects to produce about five million tests per month.

"The COVID-19 pandemic will be fought on multiple fronts, and a portable molecular test that offers results in minutes adds to the broad range of diagnostic solutions needed to combat this virus," said Robert B. Ford, president and chief operating officer, Abbott. "With rapid testing on ID NOW, healthcare providers can perform molecular point-of-care testing outside the traditional four walls of a hospital in outbreak hotspots."

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